| May 07, 2009

Back to HomeFeature Article - May 7, 2009 Addington Highlands CouncilBy Jeff Green

AH flat lines budget, hopes to avoid borrowing if grants come through

Thanks to an increase in provincial transfers through the Ontario Municipal Partnership Fund (OMPF), Addington Highlands Township will be levying the same amount of money, about $1.7 million, from its ratepayers as it did last year.

The tax burden will be shared out differently, however, as the result of property reassessment that was done last year.

The tax rate is down by about 5%, but most ratepayers saw at least some increase in their assessment, which is being phased in over four years.

In general, waterfront ratepayers saw greater increases, and the inexorable shift of the tax burden in that direction will continue over the next four years.

The township has enough money set aside to cover most of its share of costs should it receive any or all of the infrastructure grants that council applied for on May 1, all of which require the township to pay 1/3 of the cost of construction

The township has applied for a $1.5 million upgrade to the Matawatchan Road, and has money available to cover the township’s estimated 2009 portion of that project’s costs.

Money has also been set aside for the township garage upgrade in Denbigh and a new fire hall in Northbrook, which were also included in grant applications. Since all of the projects would not have to be completed until March 2011 if the grants come through, money could be raised for them in the 2010 budget if required.

Treasurer Jack Pauhl said, “The fire hall could require some borrowing, at some point, but not in 2009”.

The 2009 budget includes money for a new grader for the roads department, which will be purchased once the budget receives final approval on May 18. Two companies, Volvo and John Deere, have provided the roads department with demonstrator models that are being tested this week.

One final addition to the budget was approved at Monday’s council meeting (May 4), a one-time $5,000 contribution to the library reserve fund. The library also received a $5,000 increase in operating funds this year, to around $25,000.

Recycling meeting – A number of councilors will be traveling to Renfrew next week for a meeting about a contemplated purchase of a recycling facility there. A number of townships, including North Frontenac, are looking at a joint venture, which could solve some of their collective recycling woes.

Business Breakfast – On May 20, the AHEAD committee will be holding their spring business breakfast at Addison's restaurant on Hwy. 41 south of Northbrook. Guest speakers from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) will speak on the subject of “How business can survive in tough economic times”.

The event runs from 8:00 until 9:30 at a cost of $6. Interested parties, including business people from the Frontenac side of the Hwy. 41 corridor, should call Larry Pealow for more details or to reserve a spot - 336-2522. The breakfast is limited to 40 participants. 

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